A Strategic Weapon

Simulating The Bridge To Innovation

The Simple Definition

Virtual Experiments

A Virtual Experiment Is A Test Lab Inside Of A Computer

In simple terms ... a virtual experiment is a computer model that simulates the physics of the actual part

 

 

Engineering simulation is a mathematical modeling approach to calculate and predict the real world performance of products.    We can use this technique to predict if our part will break, or how how much it will bend under load.

We can also use this technique to predict how much fluid will flow through a pipe or valve during any given time period. 

If we would wish to know how much insulation we would need in our house during winter to save energy we could use simulation to model the physics.

With the use of virtual prototypes we can ask ... & answer the following questions

  1. Will It Break & When 
  2. Is My Design Good Enough
  3. Can It Be Made Better
  4. Can It Be Made Lighter
  5. Can I Improve Performance
  6. Can I Take Out Cost Without Taking Out Quality

 

 

What Is FEA

Finite Element Analysis .. FEA

FEA is a numerical technique used to predict how a product will react to applied forces, vibration, & heat. 

We can calculate if ... & when a part will break ... we can predict the performance of the design .. before we build it

FEA is used in the design and development of products.  Using this technique we can predict and optimize the performance of our products. We can optimize for manufacturing and make sure the part is not over or under built and will not fail in the given application.  

A Few benefits of using FEA in the design process ... We can predict the following

  1. Strength
  2. Weight
  3. When It Will Break 
  4. Vibration & Fatigue
  5. Taking Out Cost ... Not Quality
  6. Manufacturing Variation
  7. Predicting Quality & Reliability

 

 

What is CFD

Computational Fluid Dynamics .. CFD

Is a mathematical technique to predict the flow of liquids and gases and how it affects product performance.

CFD is used to design and develop products that involve the flow and interaction of liquids and gases.  The design of airplane wings utilize CFD to ensure the plane can get off the ground and is safe to fly. 

Cars utilize CFD to streamline the shape and optimize for fuel economy. 

Any product that involves the interaction of liquid and gases can benefit from the use of CFD.

Fluid Dynamics is all around us .. any time you ride in a car or fly on an airplane .. or use a computer .. fluid dynamics is involved.  

  1. CFD can help get your products to market faster for less cost
  2. To predict the performance of the product
  3. To optimize performance ... to find and eliminate  problems
  4. To reduce cost .. but not performance or quality
  5. To minimize complexity and still provide superior performance

 

 

Simulation Is Critical To Innovation

Is It Possible To Build & Test 500 Full Scale Airplanes? 

This is an absurd question and would certainly bankrupt the company attempting to do this.  However utilizing simulation we can build and virtually test 500 airplanes inside of a computer.  We can optimize for performance, cost, quality and life of the product.  We can assess  the performance of the product as designed and make design trade offs and intelligent decisions without the need for guessing and building and testing physical prototypes.  We can explore wild and crazy ideas inside of a computer very fast and cheap compared to physically testing it, the only risk being wasting a little bit of electricity.  We can fail virtually hundreds of times a day, behind close doors , and no one will ever know publicly of these failures.   

  1. It's faster & cheaper to fail virtually inside of a computer than in the public eye
  2. we can build and test 500 designs virtually in a matter of days or hours
  3. By failing fast and often we can eliminate the failure points and optimize the design
  4. We can explore wild and crazy ideas that would never be physically built and tested, physical testing is expensive, risky and time consuming, virtual testing can be performed in a fraction of the time and cost.

 

 

The Holy Trinity

You Always Get The Right Answer .. The Trick Is Asking The Right Question

Engineering simulation is not a magical black box,  garbage in does not equal gospel out.   Blindly trusting the computer is a recipe for disaster and can be very costly.  The modeling objectives should be identified and the math & physics equations should be identified and understood before the modeling is started.  The computational model should be validated by a physical test simulation has been completed. 

The Holy Trinity

  1. Physical Testing
  2. Computational Modeling & Simulation 
  3. Academic .. Scientific Journals ... Textbooks .. Theoretical Calculations Performed By Hand

 

All three of these attempt to answer the same question .. they just go about it in different ways.

If you've done your job right ... all 3 of these should agree with each other

The three answers should be close to each other

 

Here is a simple example

We wish to calculate how much water our design will hold 

  1. Simulation ... 2.1 gallons
  2. Physical Testing ... 1.9 gallons
  3. Theoretical Equations ... 2.0 gallons

 

Two of out of 3  should be performed on every design

 

 

Leadership, Product Design & Eliminating Costly Mistakes That Derail Projects & Drive Them Into The Ground.

The #1 rule of product development .. things happens ..
What determines success or failure is how you respond when things go wrong.

There are only two options:

Option 1
Excuses

Option 2
Results

Do it right the first time .. It's faster & cheaper

Travis

Travis "Grizzly" Jacobs JA Simulations